Thursday, August 7, 2008

KGB/Yeshiva part 2

This is part two of the KGB/Yeshiva system

Part II- Excessive banning and propaganda usage in the name of protecting society.

When my father was younger and was still living in the former Soviet Union he and his family used to listen to the radio show "Voice of America." However, the way he listened to it wasn't in the same way we'd listen to the radio; he listened to it while the windows were closed and while the radio was in the middle of the room, and not near the walls, so that the neighbors couldn't hear it and tell on them- through the spy network discussed in the first post.

My father grew up listening to the Barry sisters in the same fashion. He had their record and would hide it while he wasn't home, and would listen to it far away from earshot. When my aunt started bringing friends home from school, the records disappeared. My father suspects that it was because my aunt's friends were not Jewish and were capable of telling on them if they saw evidence of Jewish music.

Books like 1984 were banned.

Sounds like the frum community, no? While it was illegal to listen to the Voice of America in the USSR and listening to the wrong radio station "here" in frummyville is more of a social stigma, the comparison still fits. The frum community is such that if you violate a taboo, you may as well kiss your chances of a happy life away.

The control the Rebbeim and crazy frummies have over the entire frum world is an outrage. The fear of the unknown (aka secular) world trickling in is so great that the frummies ban everything, without using any rationality behind their actions. The insecurity they have towards their own beliefs leads towards this irrational banning. Looking at their current actions, it is clear the frummies are no different than the KGB. Just like the Soviet government feared an uprising and ensured that any knowledge of western government was avoided and they tried to portray their twisted form of government as the best, so do the frummies try to portray their communities as the ultimate form of living, exclusive only to their own kind.

The Communists used excessive propaganda against western ideology, just like frummies use excessive propaganda against any knowledge that is not their own. My mom told me once, that there were speakers coming periodically to classrooms discussing how bad America was, and why it was great to be Soviet. Hmm...I never heard of frummies having speakers teach about how bad American culture is?

The excessive banning and propaganda in the former Soviet Union and the excessive banning and use of propaganda of the modern-day frummies are eerily similar. It's no wonder they say the first communists were all Jewish (well, 70% Jewish).


Anonymous said...

I share my feelings with you about irrationality and insecurity of the leaders of our frum community and your comparison to KGB methods of controlling people.
Based on my knowledge, people in the USSR were allowed to have TV and were encourage to read and were provided with very good education, but it all was censored.
In frum community TV, reading and good education are strictly prohibited.
I think, control of the frum community should be compared with Taliban philosophy rather then KGB.


Anonymous said...

I agree with anonymous fiend.
It better to make analogy between ultra frum community and Taliban.

Anonymous said...

Maybe its just your personal experience, but I had a decent education. We read Shakespeare and Ray Bradbury. Then again, this was far far away from New York. I'll never understand New York.

~Lady E~ said...

frumpunk: New York schools read shakespeare and other "secular" books. Though the students of the school read it i dont think the administration (other than the english teachers) have ever picked up any classical literature. I remember my principal came into class in 10th grade and gave us a whole speech on how TV watching is horrible and it takes away our sensitivity to shficus damim, giloy arayos, and avoda zara. So one girl in class raised her hand and said "what we read in shakespeares dramas are just as bad, if not worse than what we can watch on tv". My principal shrugged her shoulders and said "do you really think so". In unison my entire class said "yes!!!". Obviously she realized that she was being an ignorant idiot so she said "well its good you have a frum teacher that can skip over discussing that type of stuff" and "seeing makes more of an impact than reading it". My class probably should've reminded her that our english teacher from 9th grade was not even jewish and that each grade in our school had to perform a scene of shakespeare from each play we were reading, which is seeing!! It seems like frummies just want to gain more and more control over there ppl; not better than the USSR.

frumskeptic said...

Anonymous friend: lol :-)

Punk: When it came to secular education, thank Gd my school was fairly decent compared to other schools. The state of NY requires students to read books to take the English regent, and if a girl wants to get into school for speech therapy (don't they all), she has to have a regents diploma to get into any decent college (including CUNY- 4 yr colleges).

The problem is, the entire messages of the books are missed, because they sensor everything. So we know enough to BS on a regent (except the few "modern" girls, cuz they either read alot, or have seen many movies :)).

When I took AP psych, the teacher didn't do more than mention the name "Freud!" I mean, how can you teach psych and NOT discuss Freud?

Well, my school found a way. Sure enough the girls that got credit for the class all went to Touro, because there was no way you could pass an AP with that education.

Oh, and in Bio class they COMPLETELY skipped over the male reproductive system (in my sisters school as well, which happens to be REALLY good). So thank gd I was in PS before and read things I probably sholdn't have read until kallah classes (hehehe)

YomTova said...

You should read The Bookseller of Kabul by Asne Seierstad to get chills from the similarity to chareidi attitudes. Seriously. And I didn't even finish reading it yet.

Moshe said...

Did your AP psych teacher mention Kant? hehe

Judaism is supposedly the religion of here say, not hearsay. Or at least that's what the kiruv rabbis want you to believe.
The bans, however, are based on hearsay. Do any of those rabbis have a TV or a computer or did they hear about it from a friend of a friend who based it on liberal propaganda.

My shul's rabbi, on shabbat, decided to talk about how bad facebook and odnoklassniki are. Apparently people are getting divorced because of them. He even said that after hearing about them, he "looked into it" himself. Now where would he do that I wonder, and how. Though even more, I want to know who gave him the idea, so that I can "educate" that person.

frum single female said...

the bookseller of kabul is an excellent book. im not sure if i would compare it to the frum community , but it is a must read for anyone who enjoyed the kite runner

The Babysitter said...

FrumSkeptic: When schools speak about how bad the American culture is, their labeling it American only because we live here. It's nothing against America, its just against the culture which has wrong moral values supposedly. But the more I read different news stories and read others opinions I find that they do have some morals after all. Especially in the UK, there they like banning stuff they find inappropriate like pregnant mannequins, which I'm not sure what my say on that is, I don't think any mannequin is appropriate when its just wearing undergarments. Then in UK they also want to ban Hannah Montana stuff because of her behavior. So its not just the frummies that are banning stuff. It just has to do with concern over protecting people.

Moshe: I learned about Kant in my philosophy class. I forgot what is philosophy was already. But what's the "hehe" about?

frumskeptic said...

Babysitter: Please link to sources you found on the UK banning anything.

The US is one of the prudist countries. If they aren't banning pregnant manniquins, the concept of the UK doing so makes me skeptical.

And IF they ARE banning hannah montana (Which I find very very hard to beleive), they must have some reason to do so, and just choosing her behavior as something to blame.

They should ban just about everyone and everything that has to do with today's popculture before they ban her.

It really is just frummies and wacko "frummies" of other religions that ban everything.

Moshe said...

babysitter, if you don't know what teh hehe is about, either your professor was mispronouncing the name on purpose or you're leading a very sheltered life.

The Babysitter said...

Pregnant Mannequin story
Miley Cyrus banned in UK

When I say UK, I don't mean UK as a whole, but individuals from within UK.

The Babysitter said...

Moshe: actually my teacher was Russian so she said it with a different accent. But now I know what your talking about.

frumskeptic said...

babysitter: I know you saw my reply to you on the stories you linked, but I'm real sorry I didn't respond on this post.

I just realized what I did.I must of clicked the wrong link or something. Sorry.

The Babysitter said...

yea, I remember you answered back about it, I didn't even realize it was on a different post. No problem at all.